Identity is your distinguishing character or personality. If you want to be known as a cat person, talk about cats. Want to be known as someone to avoid, only talk about the negatives. Want to be known as a jerk, be a jerk. Want to inspire, encourage others.
Your identity is how others see you, but through your words and actions, you can control the narrative. Now the hard part is stepping outside yourself and figuring out how the world sees you.
Every Sunday I send out a newsletter and right now it’s at about 35,000 subscribers. It just so happens I made an embarrassing mistake in today’s issue:
When someone first brought it to my attention I tweeted about it thinking it was a funny mistake, and since then I’ve had hundreds of emails about it.
Now I could feel bad about myself and think about what an idiot I am, but instead I choose to look at it as a positive. I’m thankful I have this many people that read what I write each week. A lot of weeks I think I’m emailing into the void, but this proves how mistaken I am with that outlook.
What is also funny is Monday is another big day for people reading the newsletter so I’m going to bed tonight expecting many more emails.
I send a lot of emails through my various web properties. I’d say at least 200 to 300 thousand emails each month. With this many emails, the likelihood of me offending someone is pretty high, and when someone gets triggered, they sure let me know.
I’ve found that if they are from a different culture, they may not even be upset. I am just using the wrong words and phrases. To them, what they are saying is perfectly fine, but to me, it comes across as tactless and offensive.
Other times it’s just a misunderstanding, and very rarely is someone just straight up being a jerk. That does happen, though, and I always just hit “unsubscribe” in the email they are replying to and go on with my day.
Outside of those people, the way I handle these situations is to respond in good faith, thinking they meant well and are not intending to come across rude. So far giving the benefit of the doubt hasn’t let me down.
It’s been all over my Twitter feed today about Meetup announcing big changes to their pricing. The way they currently charge is the user group owner pays a monthly/yearly fee for using the Meetup service. For me, this was a reasonable way to do it, but today they announced some pretty big changes to this.
Your new subscription cost is only $2 per month, or $24 per year. That means you’ll be saving at least 80% annually on subscription fees. This will also distribute costs more evenly between organizers and members. Members will pay a $2 fee when they reserve a spot at your event.
Members having to pay just to reserve a spot for your event is the part that many people are having problems with, and for good reason. Oh, you can wave that fee, but then you are responsible for covering the $2 per reservation. Now I don’t know all the stats on user groups, but from all the people I’ve heard from that run them, it’s hard to get consistent members attending. Now, this adds another hurdle to getting them.
It’s about time for all the user groups to find another service and my friend, Dries Vints, just announced a new app he is launching called Eventy.
Some of the things that you’ll be able to do with Eventy: manage user group members, RSVP to events, prepare your conference talks, submit to CFPs. And much more.
I’m super excited to hear about this new app today and if you are running a user group, join the newsletter and find out when it officially launches. I have a feeling there is going to be a lot of people wanting to move from Meetup to Eventy.
My second Hacktinkerfest logo design is now complete, and I just sent off the pull request to Buggerino, which is a native app for Android/IOS that allows you to interact with your Bugsnag account. Here are some of the designs I came up with:
Here is the larger version of the final colored options:
As you can see, I went with the bug theme, and Jordy, the creator of Buggerino, said he liked the green and/or blue moth ones the best because of the combination of code and the bug. I’m partial to the blue one too if I’m honest.
These where a lot of fun to create and I hope Jordy gets a lot of use out of it. I went ahead and exported all of them and sent them to his project so he could use them any way he wants.
I had a single tweet sort of go viral, well, not super viral, just 4,500 retweets and 10,800 likes. But I would still assume that would bring in a lot of new followers but according to Twitter analytics I gained a total of 19 new follows.
Being a viral hit is overrated and brings superficial traction. The real fans are those that find you through the mundane stuff you post or share everyday. Those are the ones you want to interact with and invest your time into.